COASST is a citizen science project of the University of Washington in partnership with state, tribal and federal agencies, environmental organizations, and community groups. COASST believes citizens of coastal communities are essential scientific partners in monitoring marine ecosystem health. The Alaska Wildlife Alliance has partnered with COASST to mobilize citizen scientists in Alaska’s coastal communities and translate long-term monitoring into effective marine conservation solutions.
The Cook Inlet Beluga Whale Photo-ID Project began studying beluga whales in Cook Inlet in 2005 by photographing the whales and identifying natural markings and scars on individual animals. Over time, sighting histories are compiled for each known individual and researchers are able to learn more about the distribution, habitat use, social structure and reproduction of the Cook Inlet beluga whales.